Posted by Mitch Mitchell on May 18, 2011
I have spent a lot of time considering the question posed in the title of this post. I have read where people have stated certain things about when the best time is to have a blog post show up and overall it’s mainly based on guessing rather than any real science. Well, I’m not a scientist, but I figured I’d talk about what I’ve noticed and leave it at that.
The first thing I’ve noticed is that I get notified of my blog showing up in feeds usually around 8PM. Now, I’m not sure if that’s a universal time for everyone or if it’s just my universal time and everyone else has it at the same moment but different time based on where they are but that’s how it works for me; yes, I subscribe to all my own posts so I can make sure they come through properly on all my blogs. All of them will show around the same time whether or not I’ve posted them live or wrote them ahead of time to post. So, whenever I put out a post, I always try to have it out before 8PM my time.
However, that’s just when it shows up. What about when I actually post? I have experimented with different posting times based on traffic and two things seem to happen. One, I have a group of people who will comment fairly early if I get a post out between 9AM and 10AM my time. Most of those people are either in the U.S. or in Australia; very strange indeed. When I was sending posts out between 10AM and 11AM most of the time they were being ignored. And if I send it out in the afternoon, when I thought more people on the East Coast had a chance to see it, they were ignored as well. So I’ve settled on an initial posting time between 9 and 10AM.
I’ve also experimented with reposting my articles at some time in the evening here and there. What I’ve seen doing that is a few people might pop over, but most of them are coming by overnight, once I’ve finally gone to bed, which either means they’re seeing my repost late or are just getting around to the original in their readers. Frankly I’m not really sure, but based on how fast Twitter moves I’m thinking it’s probably people seeing the original post.
However, there is one last metric to look at, that being Google Analytics. Over the last month I’ve made sure all my original posts on this blog have gone out between 9 and 10AM. Based on traffic, the top 3 time periods where this blog gets the most visitors are 9-10AM with 5.46%, 1-2PM at 5.39%, and 4-5PM at 5.35%. The first one makes sense, as that’s when I’m posting. The other two times… no idea.
I’m not sure what to conclude based on the numbers here. I could say it’s proof that most people come when I post, but it’s barely above the other two times so that makes no real sense. Based on when I get the feed in my reader it makes no sense. Therefore, overall I’d have to say that it seems that there’s no good time to post, and thus people should just post their articles whenever they feel the most comfortable.
Heck, I kind of like that; no real rules to follow; who’s with me? 🙂